People like walk in and urgent care clinics because they’re convenient and affordable. They are located in most neighborhoods, and you don’t need an appointment. Professionals believe there’s a link to the increasing number of clinics and a shortage of primary care physicians.
Reports say by 2015, there will be 63-thousand fewer doctors than are needed to meet basic medical needs. If you have a sore throat, sometimes it takes a week for a doctor’s appointment. If you walk in, you may wait for as long as three hours. Northeast Urgent Care Clinics and Deerbrook Family Clinic are trying to fill the gap. The Clinics have five locations and are open seven days per week. People visit the walk in clinic for things like colds, sore throats and minor cuts. Many of these clinics offer free diabetes and cholesterol screenings, attracting patients with chronic conditions. Minor emergency or urgent care clinics may have x-ray machines and treat broken bones.
Who wouldn’t want to use the clinics? There is a family doctor in Summerwood and a weight loss program in another location. However, there is some concern about the level of care received. Most of the time, you will be treated by a nurse practitioner, rather than a doctor. Some doctors believe nurse practitioners may not have sufficient knowledge about medicine dosing.
Walk-in clinics are good for patients who don’t have insurance or a primary care physician. Many of these patients have been using the emergency room for simple cuts and scrapes. The emergency room is not a good alternative because you have to wait for hours, and you’ll end up owing the hospital a lot of money. Most clinics are open weekends and have evening hours. The clinics have caught the eye of employers as well. Many employers are using them for pre-employment physicals and drug tests.
Physicians believe there’s a problem because clinics don’t have medical records for every patient they treat. However, the medical record issue may not be cause for alarm for simple colds and sore throats. People should not have to wait when they’re in pain. Walk in clinics and urgent care facilities can be good health care alternatives for many patients.